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ESL Capital Letters

Welcome to English

as a Second Language

The ESL Program at San José City College serves students who identify themselves as learners of English as a second language.


Attending ESL Classes at SJCC

Our program helps students of all ages and backgrounds achieve their education, employment, and lifelong-learning goals by providing them with instruction in English as a second language.


For Credit Courses

If you want to take credit classes, complete the CCCApply form


For Noncredit Courses

  1. Complete the Noncredit Application Form.
  2. Bring it to the Student Center, 1st Floor or send it to

For more information, email 

  • If you are coming from a local Adult Education Program, you can contact the Transition Specialist for your Adult Education Program or

  • Email the Transition Specialist at San José City College, Ana Camacho 


Department Contact

For more information contact Language Arts Office


Placement in the ESL Program

We continue to offer ESL placement testing for students who feel they need additional language acquisition support. Placement test results are used for course placement purpose only. They are not used to prevent any student from enrolling and/or attending San José City College. Counselors at SJCC will use these results along with other information to help students decide on a program of courses.

For course placement purposes, all incoming credit ESL students are required to take the ESL Placement Test. The ESL Placement Test has the following components: the ESL Accuplacer Reading and Listening tests, a writing assignment, a student questionnaire about your language background and language use.

Students who will take only noncredit courses do not have to take the ESL Placement Test.


ESL Program Description

The English as a Second Language Department offers a total of seven (7) core credit courses, three (3) elective credit lecture courses, and ten (13) FREE non-credit lecture courses that span 5 levels of language proficiency, from low-intermediate to advanced, to teach the English language skills of writing and rhetoric, reading, listening, speaking, grammar, and pronunciation.

Students can earn the state-approved ESL in Career & College Certificate by completing 3 specified non-credit low-intermediate level classes. Please access the ESL Program Chart for more information.

Courses are each offered twice a week, Monday-Wednesday or Tuesday-Thursday, in day or night sessions.  Each credit course has a number of set 'units', ranging from 3 to 6 units.  Each unit represents the number of hours in class time each week throughout a 16-week semester. 

For example, a 4-unit course meets for 2 hours twice a week.  One to two sections of ESL 302 or 99 are offered as hybrid online classes each semester, and most ESL courses are web-enhanced by instructors who use Canvas. Two sections of lecture courses are usually offered offsite at the Milpitas Extension campus, which has free parking.

In addition to 17 lecture classes, ESL offers two required 0.5-unit lab courses (24 hours over a 16-week semester) that are linked to parent courses ESL 322 and ESL 312, as well as a recommended 0-unit free lab course.

Students have access to a fully-equipped multimedia ESL laboratory where they can fulfill their lab requirements.  Students can access the ESL lab course materials and numerous other links at when the on-campus lab is closed.



ESL Program Student Learning Outcomes

Use English for a variety of educational, social, and  occupational purposes.

Recognize multiple perspectives and values inherent in our culturally diverse society.

Apply critical thinking and analytical skills to expand learning.

Demonstrate the ability to use information technology.


ESL Lab Information

The ESL Lab is in the Library/LRC Building in L-120, and the online ESL Lab is on Canvas and